The pain swirls around him in a red haze, slowly fading against the backdrop of anesthesia. The room grows white around him and he begins to see visions. They start with Marion; morph into his mom; shift to Tyrone, bright, yellow sunshine blinding their eyes as they push his ma's television down the street, faster and faster, when all he felt was free.
But the image of Tyrone has become doctors and nurses, now, leaning over him. He opens his mouth to scream, but the white cloud is rolling in fast. He doesn't want to look, can't bear to see what they're doing to him, but he does anyway, following their gazes briefly toward his shoulder .As his eyes slip closed, he tries to convince himself this isn't happening, tries to pretend it's last fall, that brief fragment of time where things didn't seem so fucked.
They're not just cutting off an appendage; they're cutting off everything he knows how to be. His arm's been with him through everything. They shot up together, jerked off together, fingered Marion together.
His silent, wordless screams echo in his head, taking on a mute form when they are anything but. White fades to black, starts pulling him under, but he swears he can hear the whiz of the saw, swears he can see the hardened faces looking down at him. Marion is nowhere to be found, unable to be conjured up during this horror. Mom returns, but somehow she's lost her glow and is growing dark, her innocent, naive image disappearing along with his arm.
The world goes quiet around him. He's lost inside his own personal hell, and suddenly Marion *is* there. It's Coney Island, and it's sunny and beautiful but she doesn't turn when he yells for her, again and again. She's so close yet slipping through his fingers. He runs toward, relieved when finally she stops and turns. But as he reaches for her, he suddenly tumbles backward, body falling of a cliff, his head hitting hard concrete. He wakes up screaming her name in a desperate mantra. A nurse tries to comfort him, tells him she will come, but he knows the truth. There's nothing left anymore. The proof is reflected by the empty space on the right side of his body.
It hurts almost as much as his heart.